Topic: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

I just came home from my 4th meeting with a psychologist who was recommended to me by my oncology center.  At first, I resisted the idea of going to a psychologist, purely because it just felt that I had so little time that I felt well enough to go and didn't want to "waste" it doing that.  While many of the topics we discuss are ones that I've mulled over in my mind over the years, she has either confirmed my conclusions or given me some new insight about which I can think further.  Most of the topics are related to how I deal with people in regard to the cancer I have.   After sitting out a week of chemo, I felt physically well today and could talk with her more clear-headed about my thoughts on what it would be like after this chemo is over.  I have had a "taste" of what it is like to feel "okay" again and I know that I'll get back to this point and better again, even if I do go through with the last round of chemo (assuming my blood counts are okay and I  do expect them to be back up).  Our conversations have really been all over the place and at first, I was wondering what these talks were going to ever actually accomplish except take up time.....but I had to remind myself that therapy takes time...whether physical or mental.   Fortunately, our insurance pays for these sessions...at least through this year....and I will continue to go to meet with the psychologist, but eventually maybe once a month, or circumstances arise over time....like the two weeks before scans, or other issues maybe even not related to my CC.

Just for today, I can get through anything.  "Never let fear decide your fate."  (from the band, Awoination.)

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Julie, BRAVO! I am so proud of you for going, telling us and bringing this out in the open. Perhaps it will encourage others to take the same step. It takes a special person to take the bull by the horns and get things done for ones self. Hope you are doing much better physically and I just feel you are someone to really look up to, especially for our newbies.  Now, go bake a cake!!!  Love you.

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Hi Julie,

I don't know if you know or not, but we have our Dr Giles here on the site who may be of help to you and indeed others as well. I know that he has helped many patients and carers here on the site and will answers questions etc if he can. He can be contacted here -

http://cholangiocarcinoma.org/for-patie … -dr-giles/

He also did a webinar with us as well and that can also be viewed on the above link.

Hope you feel a lot better really soon.

Hugs,

Gavin

Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Gavin....thanks for the reminder.  I had forgotten about Giles.  (Sorry Giles)  I appreciate the link to the webinar and will check it out. 

I'm working on the feeling better part.   I'm starting to think about the "future"....and while I am very aware and won't forget  (how can we) that this cancer could return, I'm thinking about making plans to DO things....fun things when this chemo is over.  That will either be tomorrow, a week, or a month, but by the latter, it will definitely be over.  Then, I will have two months before the next scan to live life and hopefully, a good scan report will give me another block of time to leave behind the bad memories and enjoy family and the holidays.

Just for today, I can get through anything.  "Never let fear decide your fate."  (from the band, Awoination.)

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Lainy,  Thnaks. I really wasn't sure about the psychologist, but we have melded together pretty well.  We tend to "go over" the allotted time...mostly me talking, but apparently, I have an  "interesting" story or two from a psychology standpoint.   smile   I don't know about  newbies looking up to me.  But, I do think that unless you have your mental health under control, it doesn't matter where you're at as far as physical health...and vice versa.  One of my degrees is behavioral psychology and a close family member was a psychologist, so perhaps I don't look at talking to a psychologist with some of the fear that others might.  The whole process is pretty interesting, really.

Just for today, I can get through anything.  "Never let fear decide your fate."  (from the band, Awoination.)

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

That sounds like some good positive thinking to me Julie! And also, making plans to do fun things as well, well I love the sound of that as well!

Go Julie! Fingers crossed for the next scan, a good report please!

Hugs,

Gavin

Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

The word "future" is my current favorite.  Just before I read this I posted something on that in "Member's Cafe".

Bottom line - it's time to live!

Duke

Fighting with dignity, not desperation.

Live, Laugh, Love

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Duke....it definitely is time to live.  For me....I just couldn't wrap my head around that idea until I got past this first battle....which has been hellish with ups and downs and curve balls.  I am at the stage of feeling it just may be possible to plan some escapes from all of this in the next couple months.   But, two  or more things at least are looming in my way.  First, I must get my kidney numbers into control...back into the normal range....to try to keep the acute renal problem from escalating to something more serious like dialysis down the road.  They've told me that this usually goes back to normal after the chemo is over.  I sure hope so....dang...I started out with better than normal kidney function.    Then, there's the edema in my legs...probably from the kidney function issues....hopefully that will resolve once the kidney function heads back to normal and dealing with my low hemoglobin.  I'm hoping that things improve enough that I don't have breathing issues when I want to be gone on a vacation or two. 

Plan One:  Vacation in October for genealogy  and visiting brother and family.

Plan Two:  Trip in winter to Arizona to visit relatives and old college friends.... and new friend and mom,  Lainy.  Hoping by that time,nothing new will have popped up on scans....my energy level will be really good...and I can enjoy the trip. 

Duke....raising a glass to you....here's to the future!!!  Whatever it may be!   

Julie T.

Just for today, I can get through anything.  "Never let fear decide your fate."  (from the band, Awoination.)

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Oh, Julie, I LOVE your post!!!!!  Where in AZ do your friends and family live????

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Oh yeah.....and get that danged, wonky port out of my chest as soon as it is reasonable and possible.  My current plan is to wait after this chemo to see how well my blood counts come back up and if it requires another blood transfusion.  If that's the case, I'll want to use the port.  Otherwise, once that looks clear, then the port is coming out.  I suppose that is subject to the oncologist having something else in mind, but she knows how much trouble it's been to access and maintenance flushing every four weeks would really add to the misery  and remind me each time just why it's there.

Just for today, I can get through anything.  "Never let fear decide your fate."  (from the band, Awoination.)

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Lainy,

Most everyone lives in the Phoenix or greater Phoenix area....one lives out in the dessert somewhere..but not far.   I have to get out a map to look at the addresses.  We have a college friend couple, a good sized family group....and then ...now you too.   Really looking forward to the possibility of the trip.  It's not definite yet....just was verbalized, but after the winter we had in 2013-14, it would be good to get away for a while to some warmer area.  It was minus 19 actual air temp when I was in Rochester, MN for my surgery and we drove there in a ground blizzard where we could only see about 15 feet in front of the car a lot of the way.

Just for today, I can get through anything.  "Never let fear decide your fate."  (from the band, Awoination.)

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

Great. I live in Gilbert which is next to Chandler.

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Psychologist specializing in Oncology Patients

The trips sound good Julie and I so hope that you and Lainy can meet up in Phoenix!

Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.